Minnesota senators push to declare Feb. 22 'Officer Arik Matson Day' statewide

Officer Matson was injured in a shooting while responding to a call in Waseca, Minnesota.

In honor of the Waseca Police officer shot in the line of duty in January, two southern Minnesota cities have declared Saturday, Feb. 22 Arik Matson Day and two senators have proposed a statewide resolution to do the same.

This week, Waseca Mayor Roy Srp and Albert Lea Mayor Vern Rasmussen, Jr. both declared Feb. 22 Arik Matson Day to reflect Matson’s “222” badge number. Matson is an Albert Lea resident and an officer in Waseca.

Matson was shot in the head and gravely injured Jan. 6 while responding to a report of a suspicious person in the city of Waseca. According to reports, Matson is making steady improvements and even shared an anniversary message with his wife earlier this month. 

Thursday, State Senator John Jasinski (R-Faribault) and Senate President Jeremy Miller (R-Winona) introduced Senate Resolution 196 which called for Feb. 22 to be Officer Arik Matson Day in Minnesota.

In addition to honoring Matson, the resolution would also honor all law enforcement officers and first responders.

Jasinski and Miller credit Matson’s uncle Gary Langerud, of Winona, with the idea.

“With the connection of Arik’s badge number and February 22, I thought it would be the perfect day to honor everything they do for us,” Langerud said in a release. “I’m also asking everyone to set an alarm on their phone and at 2:22 p.m., take a minute to thank God for the prayers that He has answered for Arik so far, to pray his recovery continues to go smoothly, and to pray for the safety of all law enforcement officials.”

Jasinski, who represents Waseca, said Matson’s shooting has impacted everyone in the state of Minnesota.

“It is easy to tell how much he means to his community by the huge outpouring of support, the organic efforts to honor him, such as the Waseca high school hockey jerseys, and now this terrific suggestion,” Jasinski said.